Plein Air Convention & Expo
Painting outdoors at a previous Plein Air Convention & Expo

Take advantage of these art and plein air painting events and opportunities from our 2023 Ultimate Guide to Painting Events and Organizations.

(We want to include your plein air painting events! Don’t see your group listed here? Contact our marketing team to learn how to advertise your plein air painting events and more with Plein Air Today.)


17th Borrego Springs Plein Air Invitational
Dates: March 6-10
Opening Reception: March 11
Sponsoring Organization and Venue: Borrego Art Institute, Borrego Springs
Format: Invitational
Juror of Awards: Rick Delanty
Contact: Kay Levie
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 619.701.8132
The 13 artists have been selected and will compete in a paint-out March 6-10. The Awards presentation and reception will be held at the Borrego Art Institute Gallery on March 11, 3-5 pm. Paintings will hang in the Gallery through April 2, 2023.

EXHIBITION: “Colors of Conservation”
Dates: March 3-4
Sponsoring Organization: San Luis Outdoor Painters for the Environment (SLOPE) and the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County
Venue: The Octagon Barn Center, San Luis Obispo
Original paintings and prints will be available for sale. A portion of art sales will benefit The Land Conservancy. Enjoy live artist painting demonstrations at the Saturday event. In addition, there will be tours of the Octagon Barn Center and refreshments. The event is a unique opportunity to support local artists as well as local conservancy efforts to preserve our precious county open spaces, historic ranch lands, waterways, and coastal areas. Participating SLOPE artists are Dennis Curry, Jan French, Dotty Hawthorne, Sandi Heller, Daniel Jones, Joe McFadden, Laurel Sherrie, and Jim Tyler. Guest Emeritus SLOPE artist, Bruce Everett, will also participate.


Lighthouse ArtCenter’s 10th Annual Plein Air Festival
Date: March 5-11
Opening Reception: March 5
Sponsoring Organization and Venue: Lighthouse ArtCenter Gallery in Tequesta
Format: Juried
Juror of Awards: Kenn Backhaus
Award Total: $15,000
Contact: Laura Zele
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 561.746.3101
This juried festival brings 35 of the country’s top plein air painters to the seaside town of Tequesta. The artists compete for over $15,000 in cash and prizes as they paint in picturesque locations. The festival offers a Paint Out Competition, free artist demonstrations, workshops, a Collector’s Party, a live painting competition, and freshly painted works of art for sale.

Plein Air South
Dates: March 12-16
Opening Reception: March 13
Sponsoring Organization: Franklin’s Promise Coalition
Venue: Coastal Resiliency Training Center, Eastpoint in Florida’s Forgotten Coast
Format: Open
E-Mail: [email protected]
Plein Air South has another lineup of stellar artists who will host 5 days of presentations, demonstrations, instructional sessions, and painting outdoors! Come for the intimate faculty interaction, the chance to paint with the South’s premier painters, and exciting painting locations in Historic Port St. Joe. It’s a huge workshop, symposium, paint-out, and reunion with no pressure. You will gain a ton of information and meet great friends!

Forgotten Coast en Plein Air
Dates: March 17-26
Opening Reception: March 17
Sponsoring Organization: Forgotten Coast Cultural Coalition
Venue: The Armory, Apalachicola
Format: Invitational
Contact: Joe Taylor
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 800.378.8419
Celebrating 18 years of documenting authentic “Old Florida,” Forgotten Coast en Plein Air is among the world’s most prestigious plein air events. Artistic excellence and production of investment-quality art are the trademarks of the event, which features accomplished international artists and four “Florida Finest en Plein Air” painters who are honored Plein Air Ambassadors. Enjoy plein air exhibits, expansive Wet Room, demonstrations, receptions, Painting Stations, and a VIP Collectors’ Forum.

15th Annual Plein Air Key West 2023
Date: March 11
Sponsoring Organization: The Key West Art Center and Gallery
Contact: Sean, Manager
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 305.294.1241


Paint Out Savannah
Dates: March 23-25
Sponsoring Organization: Savannah Art Association
Venue: City of Savannah at Large and the Green Meldrim House
Format: Open
Contact: Martha Love
E-Mail: [email protected]
Each spring the Savannah Art Association welcomes painters to its annual plein air competition, Paint Out Savannah. The hostess city provides endless paintable opportunities including coastal marshes, sandy beaches, historic squares, and architecturally stunning city blocks. The event closes with an awards ceremony led by this year’s acting judge.


Shadows-on-the-Teche Plein Air
Dates: March 11-18
Sponsoring Organization: National Trust for Historic Preservation
Venue: Shadows-on-the-Teche Visitor Center in New Iberia
Format: Juried
Contact: Jayd Buteau
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 337.369.6446
Shadows-on-the-Teche, a National Trust Historic Site in New Iberia, Louisiana, will present our ninth annual plein air competition in March 2023, with Dawn Whitelaw overseeing artist selection and awarding prizes. Enjoy a region enhanced by architecture, moss-draped live oaks, and sugar fields along the winding Bayou Teche. Home of the oldest operating rice mill in America, exotic gardens, and Avery Island, birthplace of Tabasco, this region offers excellent food, superb original music, and hospitable residents.

South Carolina

32nd National Juried Exhibition & Convention
Dates: March 26-April 30
Opening Reception: March 31
Sponsoring Organization: Oil Painters of America
Venue: Reinert Fine Art in Charleston
Format: Juried
Contact: Liz Pusch
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 815.356.5987
The exhibition will feature approximately 220 paintings by some of today’s top representational oil painters. Convention events include a wet-paint competition, demonstrations, speakers, and a Mystery Miniature Fundraiser and Whodunnit contest, and will take place March 26-31. Convention events are open to everyone. Registration required.

Online Painting Events:

Coming Soon: Plein Air Live
Dates: March 9-11, 2023 (Beginner’s Day March 8)
Sponsoring Organization: Streamline Publishing
Phone: 561.655.8778 or 800.610.5771
A Rare Opportunity to See the World’s Top Artists Teaching Plein Air Painting in One Place

March Deadlines for Plein Air Painting Events


Plein Air Glacier 2023
Date: August 21-25
Opening Reception: August 26
Entry Deadline: March 31
Sponsoring Organization and Venue: Hockaday Museum of Art in Kalispell
Format: Juried
Juror of Awards: Hockaday Staff, Plein Air Panelists
Award Total: $500
Contact: Alyssa Cordova
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 406.755.5268
Plein Air Glacier 2023, 14 years running! Paint in beautiful Northwest Montana, Flathead Valley, and Glacier National Park. This juried event includes a paint-out, museum exhibition, fundraiser sale, artist hikes, partnership programs with Glacier National Park, and more.


Suffolk Plein Air Festival 2023
Date: September 5-10
Entry Deadline: March 1
Sponsoring Organization: Suffolk Art League, Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts, Suffolk Tourism, and City of Suffolk, VA
Format: Juried
Award Total: $4500
Contact: Darlene Keyt
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 757.630.9832
Art enthusiasts throughout Virginia welcome artists to paint our pristine waterways, farmlands, and historic downtown. This juried event includes an Artists’ Lunch, ticketed Wet Paint Sale & Awards Celebration on Friday night with cash prizes over $4500, plus a QuickDraw competition on Saturday during the “Taste of Suffolk” Downtown Street Festival with 5,000+ attendees. Local residents offer accommodations and special hotel rates are available. We invite you to join us for this fun and artist-focused event.

Paint Great Falls 2023
Dates: May 20-27
Opening Reception: May 27
Entry Deadline: March 20
Sponsoring Organization and Venue: The Arts of Great Falls
Format: Open
Contact: Meralee Fredenburgh
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 703.795.2137
Join us for the 9th Annual Paint Great Falls! Capture the spring colors and gorgeous scenery in Great Falls, Virginia — 9 miles from Washington, D.C., but a world away with rolling hills and historic buildings. Artists can paint the Great Falls waterfall and private gardens, plus the historic Colvin Run Mill, Great Falls Grange, and Forestville Schoolhouse buildings. This 7-day event includes a quick draw and award reception.

Nova Scotia

Parrsboro International Plein Air Festival
Date: June 20-25, 2023
Entry Deadline: March 5
Sponsoring Organization: Parrsboro Creative
Venue: The Parrsboro Band Association (“The Hall”)
Format: Juried
Juror of Awards: Kathie Odom
Award Total: $6800
Contact: Michael Fuller
E-Mail: [email protected]
Phone: 902.728.2007
Nestled in Nova Scotia’s Bay of Fundy, with the world’s highest tides carving unique and ever-changing shoreline scenery, Parrsboro has become home to Canada’s largest plein air festival, judged in 2023 by Kathie Odom. Enjoy world-famous hospitality and a visual feast of color and texture in the surrounding Unesco-Designated “Cliffs Of Fundy Geopark.” Learn why many artists feel so drawn annually to these mesmerizing views, and a welcoming, authentic maritime experience.

Looking Ahead


Plein Air Convention & Expo
Dates: May 21-25, 2023
Sponsoring Organization: PleinAir Magazine
City: Westminster (Denver area)
Every year, the Plein Air Convention brings the foremost artists in their fields to share their best practices and techniques with you for five days of high-impact art instruction. It’s your chance to be part of a family of artists and to learn from the very top painters in the world. Each action-packed day includes indoor demonstrations on four stages by the world’s leading artists, including specialty sessions for oil, watercolor, pastel, and acrylic. A chance to sample the techniques of a faculty of over 80 painters.

New York

Paint Adirondacks
Dates: June 10-17, 2023
Sponsoring Organization: PleinAir Magazine
Venue: Paul Smiths College, in Paul Smiths
Contact: PleinAir Magazine, 561.655.8778 or 800.610.5771
PleinAir Magazine’s Eric Rhoads started the Publisher’s Invitational so his friends could join him in the Adirondacks to paint, but an invitation is no longer required. This event is a chance for busy painters who need a break, an opportunity to slow down, reconnect with friends, and paint beautiful places where the masters before us have painted. We make it effortless. You roll out of your dorm bed for breakfast, pack your sack lunch for your day of painting, and show up for dinner. Our days are filled with painting the Adirondack Mountains of Northern New York State and the surrounding area.

Fall Color Week 
Dates: September 29-October 5, 2023
Sponsoring Organization: PleinAir Magazine
Venue: Saranac Village City, in Saranac Lake
Contact: PleinAir Magazine, 561.655.8778 or 800.610.5771
PleinAir Magazine’s Eric Rhoads lives in a place where fall color isn’t great, so he created the Fall Color Week retreat, held in various locations during peak color season annually. It’s a week of painting with old friends and new ones. We have our meals together, and we stay on the same property … all for one price. Join Eric this fall in Saranac Lake in New York during peak fall color season. Come enjoy the beautiful fall scenery with no competition, just painting alongside your friends. No meals to cook, no one to care for, just roll out of bed, get fed, and paint all day. It’s glorious.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here